☕️ PM u-turned on the revocation of the emergency ordinances. Admission of treason?

UMNO withdraw support from PN - collapsed government? MYR is the 'cheapest' currency in Asia (ex-Japan). IMF announced USD650 bil aid, however, 58% goes to advanced economies instead of poor countries

1. MARKET SUMMARY


2. NUMBERS AT A GLANCE

USD49.9 billion — the amount Chileans have withdrawn from their pensions as of June to weather the economic fallout from the coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic. What about Malaysia’s pension fund? As of March 2021, EPF has approved withdrawals from i-Lestari and i-Sinar amounting RM19.45 bil and RM52.48 bil, respectively.

35 minutes per day — the amount of time spent on average by an American adult on Facebook in 2020 according to eMarketer, two minutes more than 2019.

Crypto billionaire paid USD83 million for a mansion in California with two panic rooms. The mansion has 20,000 sq ft of space, six bedrooms, 18 bathrooms, and a retractable roof. The video is a 5-minute tour of the house.


3. COVID-19 SUMMARY

  • National Covid-19 Immunisation Programme coordinating minister Khairy Jamaluddin (KJ) had claimed the government does not have enough money to purchase from Pharmaniaga now. Former finance minister Lim Guan Eng offered to help the government source funds of approximately RM1.5 bil to procure enough Covid-19 vaccines from Pharmaniaga for the remaining adult population in Malaysia.

  • The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have reminded the public as well as healthcare practitioners that the currently-approved antibody test cannot be used to assess a person's level of immunity or protection from Covid-19 at any time.

  • Malaysia has received 415,000 doses of AstraZeneca vaccine contributed by the United Kingdom (UK) yesterday.


OLYMPIC MEDAL COUNT


4. IN MALAYSIA 🇲🇾

Politics

  1. PM Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin acknowledged the revocation of the emergency ordinances (EO) was not properly done and be laid before Parliament in September to be debated in line with the King’s decree on the matter. Clearly, the PM and his cabinet lied to the Parliament when Takiyuddin stated that the ordinances had been revoked on July 21.

  2. Dewan Negara lawmakers from the Opposition bench marched to Parliament yesterday morning and handed a three-page memorandum to Dewan Negara Speaker Tan Sri Rais Yatim, demanding the Upper House proceed with its three-day special sitting that was supposed to start yesterday to ‘correct’ EO announcement.

  3. Housing and Local Government Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin has said Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s (YDPA) action of issuing a public statement regarding the proposed revocation of the emergency ordinances (EO) on July 29 was ‘not proper’. Zuraida said YDPA, who was bound to act on the advice of the cabinet in most matters, could have engaged the cabinet first to seek clarification before issuing the statement.

  4. UMNO president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi claims there are enough MPs from the party who have signed a declaration to withdraw its support for PM Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government. He further said the letters were presented during an audience with the YDPA.

    Datuk Seri Shamsul Anuar Nasarah from UMNO announced his resignation as the Energy and Natural Resources Minister after taking into consideration several decisions and stands made by UMNO.

Business

  1. Hartalega Holdings Bhd saw its net profit increased to RM2.26 bil for 1QFY22 ended June 30, 2021, 928% surge YoY. The figure reported for the quarter had exceeded expectations as analysts were expecting RM972 million of net profit each quarter for FY22. Hartalega’s CEO, Kuan Mun Leong said while average selling prices have declined, demand remains robust with new waves of Covid-19 cases globally.

    The group proposed a final single-tier dividend of 19.75 sen per share, subject to shareholders’ approval at the upcoming annual general meeting slated for Sept 7.

  1. Lam Research Corporation, a global supplier of innovative wafer fabrication equipment and services to the semiconductor industry, officially launched its new facility in Batu Kawan, Penang with an investment of RM1 bil. Its president and CEO Tim Archer says the new manufacturing plant at the Batu Kawan Industrial Park has a floor space of 800,000 sq ft.

  2. Dufu Technology Corp Bhd’s net profit jumped 60.86% to RM15.92 mil for the 2QFY21 June 30, 2021, on strong hard disk drives (HDD) components demand. Dufu has declared an interim dividend of two sen per share, payable on Sept 24.

  3. Malaysian ringgit is the cheapest currency within the basket of Asian ex-Japan currencies according to DBS Group Research. Foreign exchange and credit macro strategist Chang Wei Liang said the range of over-and under-valuations based on the equilibrium exchange rate (DEER) strategy.

    Given our nation’s political mess and Covid-19 situation, it easily explains why the MYR is ‘cheap’, but probably not undervalued.


5. AROUND THE WORLD 🌎

  1. PepsiCo Inc plans to sell a controlling stake in Tropicana, Naked, and other juice brands in North America to a private equity firm, PAI Partners, for USD3.3 bil. It will retain 39% in the new joint venture, valuing the deal roughly at USD4.5 bil. PAI Partners is known for investing in well-known consumer brands and has USD17.5 bil in assets. 

    PepsiCo’s juice business generated about USD3 bil in net revenue last year, however, profit margins were below average. This business contributes less than 5% to PepsiCo’s overall business of USD70 bil. Tropicana was acquired by PepsiCo in 1998 for USD3.3 bil, remains the top-selling refrigerated orange juice brand in the US followed by Coca-Cola’s Simply Orange. 

  2. Wuhan, the first epicenter of the Covid-19 pandemic outbreak, has ordered its entire 12 mil population to take coronavirus tests after finding 3 locally transmitted cases of the highly contagious Delta variant. These 3 cases were the first ones that did not come from an outside traveler. Since May 2020, Wuhan had not reported any locally transmitted cases. 

    Since July 20, 414 locally transmitted cases were discovered. Thus far, China has recorded 93,193 confirmed cases with a total death toll of 4,636. Impressive how China can mobilise resources to contain the coronavirus despite its large population (or it was underreported).  

  3. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has approved the biggest injection in its history of USD650 bil to help countries deal with mounting debt and the fallout from the pandemic. This new reserve - known as special drawing rights (SDR), is the first since the USD250 bil issued after the 2007/08 global financial crisis. 

    However, the distribution of the SDR amongst its members is defeating the purpose of it being financial assistance. Reserves are allocated to all 190 members of the IMF proportion to their quota - some 70% will go to the Group of 20 largest economies, with just 3% for low-income nations. 

    Countries in Africa will receive only about USD33 bil from this allocation. South African President Cyril Ramaphosa suggested that about a quarter of the reserves should be made available to African countries. The developed and rich countries should be allocated less or none at all since they have the capability of ‘printing’ money without severely devaluing their currency. 

    News In Brief:

  4. Bill Gates and Melinda French Gates have officially divorced after a judge finalised their split on Monday, according to court records. 

  5. Singapore has granted its first-ever crypto exchange license to the Australian crypto exchange, Independent Reserve,  with an “in principle” approval. The Monetary Authority of Singapore has received around 170 applications since January last year. 

  6. In its attempt to stamp our vaccine misinformation and get teens to vaccinate, the White House has signed on 50 Twitch, YouTube, and TikTok influencers to reach their massive follower count, which largely consists of young users under the age of 30 to get vaccinated. 

  7. Zoom Video Communications has agreed to pay USD85 mil to settle a lawsuit claiming it violated users’ privacy rights by sharing personal data with Facebook, Google and Linkedin and letting hackers disrupt Zoom meetings in a practice called “Zoombombing”.


6. FOR YOUR VIEWING PLEASURE 👁👁 (Beta Mode)

  1. How one Dutch company is making vegan leather from waste mangoes.

  2. A viral aerial photo of Lollapalooza 2021 music festival in Chicago over the weekend. Covid-19 not invited to this party?